“All right, we just have a couple more songs for you guys,” announces the singer of a band you like, or a band you are seeing out of obligation, from the stage. You look down at your watch: It is 11:25. Man—come on.
Here is the correct time for a concert to end: 11 P.M.
It’s fun to see a band play. It’s like listening to recorded music except louder and less convenient and more expensive, or some way to describe it that sounds appealing. Sometimes the band will have funny banter. You can dance. Sometimes you will get “friend points” for going to see your friend’s band and later when you need a favor you can subtly remind your friend that you went to see her play that one time. Or you can never ask for a favor and just rest comfortably with the knowledge that you are the better friend. Often a worthwhile reward.
Unless the concert goes past 11 P.M.
11 P.M. is still late—don’t be fooled. But the thing about 11 P.M. is also that it is not too late. When a concert ends at 11 P.M., you get home at a reasonable hour. You’re able to enjoy more than enough time in front of a band playing music, and then you’re able to go to sleep to rest your body for tomorrow. Or, if you want, you’re able to go somewhere and do something else. Grab a drink at a bar? Sure, it’s only 11 P.M after all. Take a leisurely stroll home with your date and enjoy the cool night air? Man, you’ve got to enjoy life and it’s only 11 P.M.—sure, let’s do it.
Best of all, when a concert ends at 11 P.M., you aren’t left standing in a crowd of sweaty jerks thinking, “Ahh, god damnit, when will this be over?” You aren’t standing there like an idiot thinking, “The G is going to take so long to come, I’m never getting home at this rate!” You aren’t thinking, “Stop playing!!!!!!!”
So why not end all of them at 11 P.M.?
Ending a concert after 11 P.M. is excessive. Ending a concert after 11 P.M. willfully ignores the fact that we have lives to live outside of this experience: Jobs to attend tomorrow morning, people to talk to instead of stand silently near, beer to not drink instead of drink. It ignores the fact that we have all have human bodies and have been standing here for quite some time.
Concerts are a young person’s game, it’s true.
“But I’m a young person,” you might be thinking. “What about me?” Well then, young person, you should be in bed, probably earlier than 11 P.M., but because it is a special occasion you may stay up past your bed time. You may stay up until however long it takes you to get straight home after the concert ends at 11 P.M.
“If you want to leave at 11 P.M. so badly, why don’t you just leave at 11 P.M.?” you might be thinking. “Why ruin the experience of someone else, some dumb-dumb whose unsatisfying existence and fear of eventual death force him to engage in behavior that is objectively unenjoyable, by demanding a blanket 11 P.M. end-time rule for shows—I mean, concerts?”
Well, rude person, I’ll tell you why. Because leaving at 11 P.M. isn’t always an option. Relationships are built on compromise, and maybe your friend or significant other would like to stay until the end. You’re no jerk—of course you’ll stay. Maybe you run into an old friend and agree to meet her outside of the venue and catch up for a few minutes after the show. You’re no jerk—of course you’ll meet her outside of the venue and catch up for a few minutes after the show. A coworker named Andy might invite you on more than one occasion to see his band play at 11 P.M. You’re no jerk—of course you’ll catch them next time.
Here is how to fix these problems: End all of the concerts at 11 P.M.